This is TV Time Capsule, our chance to revisit moments that defined a genre, era, or generation. In each episode, we’ll take a critical look at a show, theme, or entertainer to relive the absurdity of pre-streaming programming.
Do you ever wish there were more shows on television about dick shapes and getting cum on their face? For most, probably not. But during a few golden years on MTV Canada, people with “my specific preferences” were given exactly that, in the form of cult panel show 1 Girl 5 Gays.
Hosted by Aliya-Jasmine Sovani, 1 Girl 5 Gays debuted in 2009 and featured a rotating cast of exactly that: Sovani and five gay men who cycled in and out of the panel each episode, where they discussed the early years of Grindr, cruising at the airport, fruit and vegetables they’d masturbated with, heartbreak, and turn-of-the-decade pop culture. Better still, the panelists fought and argued and hooked up outside of the show. Their personal lives bled into the panel, and then back out of it, creating a maelstrom in Toronto’s insular gay community, from which producers pulled their casting decisions. It was, by more modern standards, a complete mess.
In the video above, Jezebel’s Joan Summers and contributor Harron Walker revisit some of 1G5G’s more iconic moments, and discuss lessons that can be learned from its complicated, dense tapestry of gay-on-gay conflict in the 2010s.